Los Angeles (United States), March 9. The former president of Peru Alejandro Toledo, wanted by the justice of his country for crimes of corruption, will remain free on bail until the appeal he filed weeks ago against his extradition approved by the US State Department be resolved.

Judge Thomas S. Hixson, of the federal court for the Northern District of California, ruled this Thursday in favor of the defense of the former Peruvian president, who had asked him to wait for the Court of Appeals of the Ninth Circuit, based in San Francisco. resolve this call.

A few weeks ago, the United States government asked this judge to remand Toledo because approving his extradition could increase the risk of escape.

Hixson decided this Thursday to maintain the freedom of Toledo, although he assured that if the Ninth Circuit determines that the extradition must take place, he will order the former Peruvian president to surrender.

Toledo himself, who appeared virtually, and his lawyer assured that the former president would turn himself in if they lost the appeal, while the federal prosecutors who intervened in this case insisted on asking for his detention.

The health situation of Toledo (76 years old) has been another of the arguments put forward by his legal representatives throughout the process, since they consider that the final resolution “could take months”, which is why he “would languish while waiting in a cell “.

This aspect was taken into account by the magistrate, who explained that he had decided not to imprison the politician for the moment, because as long as the appeal is still pending, there is no deadline for the ‘extradition.

Before the start of the hearing on Thursday, it was learned that Toledo had filed a complaint against the Secretary of State, but now in a court in Columbia (United States), for wanting to extradite him without following due process. and allegedly violating the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution.

Toledo, who was president between 2001 and 2006, is accused in his country of having received tens of millions of dollars in bribes from the Brazilian construction company Odebrecht in exchange for promoting its business in Peru, while he was still president.

Specifically, he was investigated for money laundering, collusion and influence peddling for contracts awarded to Odebrecht for the construction of the interoceanic highway between Brazil and Peru.

The former president was arrested in 2019 in California, where he has resided for a few years, and spent 8 months in prison for flight risk, although he was able to get out of prison when he was released on bail due to of the pandemic.

Last September, the American justice approved his extradition to Peru, having found sufficient evidence to justify this measure, although the final decision remained in the hands of the State Department, which granted the extradition on February 23. .

In the Peruvian chapter of the “Odebrecht affair”, the biggest corruption scandal in Latin America, former presidents Alan García (2006-2011), Ollanta Humala (2011-2016) and Pedro Pablo Kuczynski (2016-2018) , as well as three at the time presidential, Keiko Fujimori. EFE



Categorized in: